It’s cooled down a bit, making an early morning walk in the Preserve much more enjoyable. Of course, “cool” is a relative term in Arizona. Let’s just say it’s been below 80F at 6 am in the morning. But where there are trees and water, even if the latter is reclaimed, there’s more coolness in the air and people and animals are out and about.

“Diversity” is the “in” term now and the Preserve’s got it as this photo of a great blue heron (GBH to Sylvia) and a great egret, both preening away, getting primped for the photographers, shows. The GBH nickname amuses me because in many of the British police procedurals I read, that stands for “Grievous Bodily Harm.” I imagine the fish in the area might go for that meaning.

Look in the background, there at the bottom of the reeds. Sneaking around behind the larger, flashier birds is a juvenile night heron.

Gamboling about looking for food is a Gambel quail. There are lots of these ground dwellers around but you’ll also see them in trees and bushes. The babies are adorable, but even when small, they can all run like crazy.

For many, birds are the main attraction here, although this guy (?) night beg to differ. I did look up how to figure out what sex a turtle is, but it’s not easy even if you can get up close and handle the turtle, which certainly isn’t happening here! Too bad it’s not a snapping turtle or I could use one of my husband’s favorite turtle lines: “Turtle soup, waiter, and make it snappy!”

I’ll leave you with a little optical fun, just to mess with your mind and eyes a bit. Thanks for coming along for another walk. I imagine you’ll be seeing a lot more of this place and its inhabitants in future blog posts.

for Jo’s Monday Walk 9.21.20

  1. ledrakenoir says:

    Fascinating, very well captured. 🙂

  2. macmsue says:

    Lovely shots of some interesting birds. The Gambel Quails colours make it much fancier than any I’ve ever seen in Australia.

  3. peggyjoan42 says:

    You captured some beautiful pictures at this oasis in the hot Arizona desert. Years ago we were in Phoenix in the summertime when it was about 110 degrees. We owned a black car then and the air conditioner was unable to make it bearable. No more black cars for us.

    • Yeah, a black car wouldn’t be the best. Our van is a darker grey and the car a lighter grey, so that’s not bad. Have to have one of the sunscreens for the windshield, though, and if I can find parking in the shade, I’m happy to walk a distance to the store! This summer we set a record for days over 110, a record I didn’t need to be present to break!! 🙂

      • peggyjoan42 says:

        Arizona is hot, but it is a dry heat. A 110 degree temperature in Arizona is equal to a 95 degree day with 100 percent humidity here in Arkansas. I like the dry heat better.

      • The dry heat does make a difference, but when it’s 115, it’s still HOT!!

      • peggyjoan42 says:

        Ha – yes 115 is hot. I probably spend 25 years of my life in Arizona at different times. I graduated from Flagstaff High School and my daughter was born there 14 years later when we moved from Illinois to Arizona. The humidity here can make 95 seem like 115 and you sweat profusely. Hot is definitely Hot!! Ha Ha

  4. Dan Antion says:

    These are wonderful photos, Janet. I can see why you get out there early. I love watching herons walk along the edge of the water. They seem so stealth-like, quiet and deliberate. When they strike at something, I’m always shocked.

    • The fishing birds are a study in patience, Dan. They’ll stand for a very long time without moving and when they do, as you said, it’s slow and deliberate…until the strike. 🙂

  5. de Wets Wild says:

    I can’t imagine very many better ways to start the day!

  6. Early morning walks are the best!

  7. Wonderful to see all that diversity and so well photographed.

  8. rugby843 says:

    I think herons must be the bird of the month.😀

    Sent from Yahoo Mail for iPad

  9. Enjoyed the morning walk, and your pictures. Those quail are pretty cool looking birds.

  10. viveka says:

    Janet, thanks for taking me along … the most beautiful walk I have done for a very long time. I can feel the peace through your images .. the beautiful birds, the water-land … the turtle. So beautiful

  11. Prior... says:

    Ah, these are more of what I call the professional photos you offer is (all
    Your photos are good and fit your post themes – but as noted before – sometimes there is this professional vibe that stands out)
    And this post was one of those times.
    Also – ready o e of your comment replies about “fishing birds are a study in patience” and I can relate when trying to get some casual photos of birds in South Florida – challenging for sure

  12. restlessjo says:

    Very nice, Janet. The bird portraits are beautiful, especially the heron, and I rather like the brain teaser to finish 🙂 :). Thanks a lot for joining me so often.

  13. Hi Janet, glad to hear you’re enjoying the Preserve. I’m in AZ as well, but I haven’t yet visited that neck of the woods. Nice post! 🌞

  14. Rupali says:

    What a wonderful place and such mornings Ah!

  15. Amy says:

    Wow… love the first images especially!

  16. Nice, Peaceful. Beautiful. Great shots.

  17. Resa says:

    Really, a very lovely walk!
    Is the Preserve walking distance from your home, or do you drive there, and then walk around?

  18. aFrankAngle says:

    Hi Janet. I came over from Jo’s and enjoyed this walk from a time we weren’t connected. Thanks for the stroll.

  19. margaret21 says:

    Wonderfully atmospheric photos, and a great walk

  20. Lisa Coleman says:

    Nice photos of nature. When I write my list of birds when birding, I write GBH & LBH for Little Blue Heron, TCH for Tricolored Heron. I thought that was funny. Those Gamble Quail are fast. Hard to photograph. As soon as you think you got them…nope! 😊

    • It makes sense to use less letters. What amuses me about GBH is that in a number of British police procedural novels, GBH means “Grievous Bodily Harm.” I suppose the fish might find that appropriate. 🙂